CFP: Medievalism in East Asia – I: From Printed Story-Worlds to Digital Role-Playing Games

We are extending the deadline to submit proposals to the Mutual Images 9th International Workshop, organised in collaboration with the Digital Curation Lab at the University of Salford (Manchester, UK). The new deadline has been set to the 27th of September.


University of Salford, Manchester (UK)
2 – 3 December 2021

December 2021 will mark the 20th anniversary of the cinema’s release of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, directed by the New Zealander film director, writer and producer, Peter Jackson; an adaptation that rekindled the flame of Medievalism all over the world. What better occasion, then, to look at Tolkien’s influence in East Asia, as well as extend our observations to the general state of Medievalism in, and from East Asia, and particularly in, and from Japan? Moreover, with the dramatic passing of Miura Kentarō – author of the manga Berserk, one of the most iconic and influential neo-medieval manga – in May, such a research endeavour appears even more necessary than before.

As such, we, at Mutual Images Research Association, have decided this year to start a sub-series of our annual International Workshop, dedicated to Medievalism in East Asia. This first edition, done in co-operation with, and hosted by the Digital Curation Lab at the University of Salford (Manchester), aims to explore the reception, interpretations and refashionings of the European Middle Ages across all genres and media in East Asia, from early to most contemporary creations, from printed story-worlds to digital role-playing games. Participants are asked to consider the cultural, ideological, or theoretical implications of such recreations of the European Middle Ages.

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers. We encourage submissions characterized by interdisciplinary approaches and based on frameworks coming from all disciplines of humanities and social sciences. This workshop is open to PhD students and academics at any stage of their career. Papers for this workshop can fall into, but are not limited to, the precedent questions and the following categories:

  • Historical evolution of Medievalism in East Asia (e.g. Japan, South Korea, China)
  • The reception and legacy of Tolkien in East Asia
  • The influence of Dungeons & Dragons in East Asia
  • Adaptation of European medieval texts, folklore, mythology and/or medieval history
  • (Neo)medievalism in serial narratives (anime, manga/manhwa/manhua, novels)
  • The isekai phenomenon in Japanese neomedievalism
  • East Asian game industries and neomedievalism
  • The impact of digital technology on medievalism in East Asia
  • The reception of Japanese, South Korean or Chinese (neo)medievalism in Europe
  • Musical (neo)medievalism in East Asia
  • Eco-medievalism in East Asia
  • Theoretical approaches of Medievalism when applied to an East Asian context


Abstracts (≈300 words), a short bio, and 5-10 keywords should be submitted by 27 September, 2021. Abstracts are to be submitted to the following address:

Your email subject line must read: MUTUAL IMAGES 2021 Abstract Submission. We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us within a week, please resubmit.

All papers presented may be subsequently submitted to the peer-reviewed research journal Mutual Images –

Due to Covid-19, we are expecting to hold this workshop at best as a hybrid event with in-person as well as online participation, with the option of having it fully online. More details will be announced, later on, on this particular point. We will use the institutional virtual platform (Blackboard Collaborate). Access details will be provided in due time.

Under agreement with contributors, conference video recordings will be available for free as part of a newly established MIRA (Mutual Images Research Association) Archive.

Join Organising Chairs:
Dr. Maxime Danesin (Mutual Images Research Association, France)
Dr. Manuel Hernandez-Perez (University of Salford, Manchester, UK)
Dr. Juan Hiriart Vera (University of Salford, Manchester, UK)

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